Monday, September 28, 2009

After 3 Days of Misery, Now Relief

So the last time I wrote, everything seemed to be cupcakes and rainbows with the transplant. I had hardly any pain and I was up and moving only hours after waking up. Then reality set in. After two great days of putting on make up and being all smiles, things changed. The pain ball that was attached to my incision was removed. So it was just me and the pain. I've been through a lot in the past 9 years. From a lung transplant, to shingles, to getting my gums burned off, to pneumonia, to breaking my arm and recently my leg; you name it, it's seems like I've been through it all. But this was the worst pain I'd ever experienced in my life.
My incision hurt like nothing I'd ever felt before. Any movement of my torso caused extreme pain. It was like someone was twisting a knife into my incision. Getting out of bed to walk to the bathroom was enough to take my breath away to where all I could do was scream. Walking was impossible. The thought of getting out of bed was enough to bring me to tears. I was convinced I had something terribly wrong with me.
After 2 days of this, with the pain only getting worse. We decided something needed to be done. About midnight Saturday night, we got an ultrasound. My new kidney was totally healthy. There was no fluid surrounding it. It was perfect. This brought both relief and confusion. What is wrong?!
On Sunday, we all were at the end of our rope. We begged the doctors for answers. Finally, we have some. During the surgery, muscles and nerves are cut. Swelling is a natural part of surgery, but unfortunately, when you're small, the swelling can be much more uncomfortable. All these cut nerves and tissue are stuck in my tiny tummy and this can cause nerves to press up and crimp against things, which can lead to the extreme pain. So there's a con for being skinny. If you need a kidney, I suggest you get a bit of tummy going. You're gonna need some extra space.
Luckily after lots of trial and error, we finally found a drug that gave me some relief. After morphine, tylenol with codeine, and fentanyl all failed miserably, I met dilaudid. One shot of that in my IV and I was walking, washing my hair, putting on make up. It's a real love story with dilaudid. It seriously saved my sanity. I am hoping to go home tomorrow with the pill form of my new boyfriend. In all seriousness though, I'm hoping to be off the drugs as soon as possible. My doctors say that the swelling will get better every day.
I think I've finally turned the corner, with help from the pain meds. I should be going home tomorrow. I can't wait to hug my little Claire and sleep without being interrupted. I'm finally feeling good. Overall though, this was a great experience. Great doctors, expert surgeons, and a loving family around me to deal with all my moodiness. I cannot wait to rejoin society healthy and happy. I'm so grateful for everyone's prayers, support, flowers, and sweet treats! There's so much love in my life, it's crazy and I'm truly in awe of it.

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